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Phil Croucher

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Posts posted by Phil Croucher

  1. Hi Downwash - no dog in the manger - I just observed that people were taking advantage of regs that don't even seem to be in CARs yet - and which were meant to cater for specific circumstances, i.e. base managers etc, not for normal use. I know you guys would be OK, but that's not what I've been hearing about others from people who have emailed me in my other role at Vertical.






  2. I'm all for an Association as described above - where do I sign? :)


    With regard to CARs, most of it is poorly written - to use an English legal phrase, you could drive a coach and horses through a lot of it. We should certainly have input there. Personally, I don't care whether passengers wear seat belts or not - I expect them to have the sense to realise ithat an instrument panel in the face tends to ruin the whole day, but as long as my neck's on the block, then they will wear them - end of story. Don't forget that as soon as you instruct a passenger, it becomes law as well.



  3. cyclic monkey - the quiet cruise is there because the 407 can actually fly quite happily at lower RPM - they apparently were increased to suit customer demand. Memory escapes me as to what the limits were (you weren't supposed to have it on below about 200 feet, I think), but it certainly reduced the noise complaints at the Falls. Not quite Blue Thunder!



  4. But that's just my point - the rules are there, but people just ignore them anyway(leaving aside the fact that noone seems to enforce them) - which is the thrust of my next article in Vertical. It's only peer pressure that is going to change this, which is where I see an association's function.


    As far as shoulder straps go - I will say it all over again - CARs does not specifically state that shoulder straps will be worn in the front seat, but it does say that they will be supplied in helicopters made after a certain date (forget which right now). However, the definition of a seat belt in CARs includes mention of a shoulder strap, where fitted, so when CARs says seat belts will be done up, the shoulder strap is included. I would suggest that the smart lawyer acting on behalf of someone injured because they didn't have one on would take that view, just before he takes your house away. Transport certainly do.


    Most ops manuals say they should be done up, and ICAO Annex 2 says that your word is law, so if you say they must, they have no argument.


    And just in case anyone is thinking of flying with only one door off on one side of an AStar - the limitations section of the flight manual bans it, therefore your **Cof A is invalid** if you do, as is any insurance automatically, and having no insurance is grounds in most mortgages for repossession.




  5. I think the greatest value of an "association" would be the knowledge that you are supported with regard to decisions that might be unpoular (like refusing to take off if passengers don't wear shoulder straps in the front seat), or at least other people think the same way as you do.


    Considering that some companies have recently had machines sitting on the ground because there were no pilots to fly them (and many companies were committing pilots early this year), it seems to me that it will shortly be our turn anyway - unscrupulous employers watch out!


    I think that whatever is formed should have a safety committee that lays down a code of conduct that all people who aspire to call themselves professional should stick to. That is, no carrying passengers on the end of a long line, no flying Astars with only one door off on one side, no overtorquing to get loads off the ground, etc. There's too much of that stuff still around and it should stop.



  6. Overtalk makes a good point - the big thing to watch if you are a contractor is who gets it in the neck if something happens - if you are an employee you are protected somewat, unless you are acting outwith the terms of your employment.


    "Aside from whether your tax is deducted at source, you can identify the essential difference between the two in the way that you're treated. An independent contractor is outside the employer's business and is told merely what has to be done, and not how.


    In Canada, there is a 4-part test as to whether you are an independent contractor or not, but, unless you actually own the air service or have income from other business pursuits, it is difficult to meet (deductions at source are not part of it)."


    from Operational Flying


    Although you can claim more expenses, you still need the cashflow to take advantage! Many people find it eaasier just to pay the tax.




  7. Not sure I agree with that - it's only an instructor's job to make the learning process as interesting as possible - most of it is up to the student, which is what university is all about.


    If you genuinely have tried to motivate them, and they still won't work - well, we don't need people like that in the industry.



  8. Losing money, badly managed? You could say that most helicopter companies on that basis were like Air Canada :) However, they're certainly not bloated with staff, so I guess the comparison ends there, except for, say, Canadian, judging by other posts I've seen recently. In terms of public perception, and their view of a pilot's status, I can't really think of one - helicoptering in Canada is very much a blue-collar job.


    Having said all that, based on my own experience, I would have to say Cougar must be up there, with Remote and Yellowhead in their own markets, plus Alpine, Venture and Abitibi based on what I hear.



  9. Aviation seems to be the only industry that uses this training bond stupidity - Ryanair in UK even charge $100 per pilot application, which must be renewed every 6 months - no wonder their fares are cheap!


    Any other business would treat training as a legitimate business expense, and make you want to stay with them. My stepdaughter has just had upwards of $50,000 insurance training dumped on her, with no question of time serving or any other bonding - she can leave, get pregnant, whatever she wants. The company figures that if she moves on, her replacement will have had equal training, or she might even come back, since it''s a relatively small industry, as ours is.





  10. RDM - you''re right - I''m on a s-l-o-w link at the moment, and I should have mentioned that a typical lawyer''s only function is to absorb money into their profession from mug punters, regardless of the job done. When it comes to aviation, make sure you have one that specialises, because most of them just look at the rules and stop there.


    I amazes me how many companies spend millions of dollars on a machine, and cheapskate on the driver, who is a minimal part of the cost. Does it never occur to these people that they might try to run a good company and get somebody to *want* to stay rather than force them? If some of the people I have met were to drown in the South Seas, I suspect that you would find their bodies circling the sharks.



  11. You would need to see the contract to be sure - if it just states the bare fact that he must complete three years, then he's stuck with it, but tell him to look for a force majeure clause, and to check with the lawyer that the thing is enforceable in the first place - many such contracts are unenforceable.


    Good luck - treatment like that gives sharks a bad name



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